How did the world’s largest living reptile, the saltwater
crocodile, reach so many South Pacific islands separated by huge stretches of
water despite being a poor swimmer?
Apparently, like a surfer catching a wave, these goliaths
can ride currents on the ocean surface to cross large areas of open sea,
researchers now reveal.
The saltwater or estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)
is a ferocious giant that can grow at least 23 feet long (7 meters) and weigh
more than 2,200 pounds
One satellite-tagged crocodile, 12.6-foot-long male (3.8 meters)
– left the Kennedy River and travelled 366 miles (590 km) over 25 days, timing
its journey to coincide with a seasonal current system that develops in the Gulf of Carpentaria.
it was recently discovered that
considerable numbers of the reptiles congregated to feast on an annual fish
migration, so these long trips might be a way for the predators to satisfy
their hefty appetites.